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The Complete Calvin and Hobbes Paperback – Box set, November 13, 2012
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"At some level, all American childhoods are the same, which probably explains our lasting love affair with Calvin and Hobbes." (Timothy R. Smith, The Washington Post)
"Bill Watterson's 'Calvin and Hobbes,' easily one of the most beloved comic strips of all time..." (Bryan Hood, New York Post)
"A student of comics, Watterson drew from an eclectic set of influences...The result was a strip that was vibrant, accessible, and beautiful." (Jake Rossen, Mental Floss)
About the Author
Bill Watterson is the creator of Calvin and Hobbes, one of the most popular and well-regarded cartoon strips of the twentieth century. Calvin and Hobbes appeared in newspapers from November 1985 until Watterson's retirement in 1995.
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The original problem was that the pages were glued together instead of sewn. THIS HAS BEEN CORRECTED with a subsequent printing. That being said, I would strongly recommend against purchasing a used copy of this set unless you've verified with the seller that the binding is SEWN binding.
A little background: being aware of the issues surrounding the glued binding, I did a little research on internet forums to see if the issue had been corrected. The only evidence I could find was one random poster on a random forum saying that they "thought" the issue had been corrected.
So I took matters into my own hands and called the publisher. It took forever to get through to them (the number seems to be intended for wholesalers looking to purchase in bulk), but the lady that helped me was able to call back and confirm that the binding is now sewn rather than glued. I asked when the most recent printing had been, and her (now undoubtedly out-of-date) answer gave me confidence that it was far enough back to reassure me that most retailers would have cleared out their stock of the first edition printing. Reassured by this (and Amazon's return policy), I went ahead and purchased after it went on sale. And I can now confirm: sewn binding.
As an aside, as others are saying, the collection is quite heavy—but I wouldn't say that the individual books are too heavy to read if you've propped the book against your legs, etc.
The quality of this collection is (finally) worthy of such a great and timeless comic strip. Calvin & Hobbes stands alone at the top of best comic strip of all time, and nothing else even comes close. Everyone can enjoy this strip, from young kids to adults (though adult fans likely won't want to let their kids touch the books lol)
One of the best parts of this collection is how it's bounded. The older versions had the pages glued in, causing them to fall out. This one, the pages are sewn into the book. It's built for the long haul and should last many, many years.
This timeless comic is still funny after all these years and likely will stay that way. Pick it up today.
1) This has every weekday strip, weekend comic, and extra creation for the books that Bill Watterson ever created on "Calvin and Hobbes."
2) It is ordered and labeled chronologically.
3) I have the 5th edition. I expect this is in its 17th printing or so now. The hardcovers and slipcase are high quality. The pages are strong and durable, and the colors from the Sundays are very vibrant.
4) There is a short essay in the front of the first volume. After that, there are no comments.
5) If you are looking for Bill Watterson's comments on his work, you should go buy the 10th Anniversary book.
I bought this for my 10 year old daughter and she absolutely loves them. She read all the volumes every night for weeks. When she finished, she started over. These are, of course, comics written for adults so we also sat together many nights and read them together and I could explain some of the jokes, big words, context, etc to add to her experience. Most likely, kids under 10 might not get a lot of it — they would still enjoy them as they are comics — but at age 10 my daughter was able to start appeciating the nuance of the jokes better as well as laugh at how it teases children and adults. But to be clear, this is also a great gift for adults, especially those that came of age in the late 80s and early 90s.